Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Abha in the Mountains.....

As one of my projects is located in the town I took a trip to Abha, in the Asir Province of South Western Saudi Arabia yesterday, located not too far from the Yemeni border and standing at 2,500m above sea level, this truly is a very different Saudi Arabia and a world away from the heat and sand of Riyadh.
Abha is located close to Al Sooda which is the highest point in the Kingdom at 2,800m approx.. and on arrival, the very first things you notice is the, airport perched up in the mountains and the dramatic drop in temperature, some 15 degrees lower than Riyadh, Its located in the Mountains and is a very scenic area and very popular with Saudi’s during summer time for holidays.

As this was a work trip and only a day trip, I didn’t get much time to look about but saw enough to entice me back and had the great pleasure of being escorted by my work colleague Hussein Al-Qahtani, a local from Abha and a member of the local chamber of commerce who is clearly very proud of his town and region and went out of his way to bring me around the town and on to the local souk in the short time I was there and invited me back to visit the famous Al Habala hanging village located not far from here, an abandoned village accessed through vertical rock faces where the locals used ropes to get around, a word to thanks to you Hussein for your kindness and hospitality !

Good news is that I will need to fly down here on a monthly basis in the future for work so will have many more opportunities to visit one of Saudi’s most scenic areas.